Xinhua recently reported that the China Banking Regulatory Commission (CBRC) announced on January 7 that China is set to start an experiment to allow banks to be fully privately owned. The CBRC is planning to take a very conservative approach and allow only three to five banks this year. Meanwhile private capital can now be part of the ownership of current banks. The fully private banks will only be able to do business under a “limited license,” which will impose restrictions on the scope of business, operating regions, and customer profiles. In addition to these “limited restrictions,” all private banks will be required to establish a “will,” which must explain what will happen if the bank were to file for bankruptcy in a circumstance where taxpayers provided no bailout. Over thirty publicly traded companies have filed their applications to enter the banking business.
Source: Xinhua, January 7, 2014